A Reflection: Things I wish I Would Have Done Before COVID-19

A Reflection: Things I wish I Would Have Done Before COVID-19

Lots of thinking going on!

Things are insane right now. The world is being turned upside down and shook. At least that is how it feels to me.

The uncertainty, mystery and severity of this evolving pandemic has created abrupt changes to how we live and interact. The way things were before is a memory, not yet blurry. Still in the forefront of many of our minds.

The situation has given me much pause and forced me to think about life. Now that I am stuck inside my house where it is safer, I have thoughts of what I should have done when I could do them. I just wanted to share them in this post.

I wish I would have gone to the library

Sounds boring right? Well to me, it is not. Books are my happy place, the safest place for me to hide. I barely went pre-pandemic and this was a mistake.

I should have taken my son with me and immersed ourselves in literature. If I had done that, I wouldn’t be kicking myself for not doing it now.

I wish I would have taken my son to the kid-friendly places around town

My 5 year old has a language delay and needs some social skills work. It would have been great for him to be around other children around town at fun places such as parks (more often), bounce house places, trampoline centers, the nature center and the children’s museum.

I can’t help feeling like a bad mother that I did not do this and probably won’t ever be able to now.

I wish I would have walked around the mall

I am a homebody, but I do like being out in public occasionally. Although I am not big into shopping, I have thought about how fun it would be to just stroll around the mall in my town. Just looking at random things and burning some calories through walking around.

This will most likely never happen. I have a strong feeling that malls will be no more after this pandemic gets a lot better/ends.

I wish I would have learned how to do my hair

Maintaining my locs is not easy for me. Even though I have a lot of time to learn how to do it now, it would have been nice if I learned how to do it a long time ago. The transition to this new way of living, would have been a little easier had I known how to do my hair myself.

Who knows if I will ever be able to see a hair stylist again. That means I will have to keep trying to do my own loc maintenance, be completely free-form indefinitely or cut them all off!

I wish I would have started my daycare business back up sooner

What I really want to do in life (freelance writing) is simply not happening and probably never will. If I would have just bit the bullet and started doing daycare again sooner, I would have saved up enough money so that we would be in better shape right now from a financial standpoint.

I am unable to make my daycare business work due to this pandemic and do not know when or if I will be able to start up again. It sucks.

Hindsight is 20/20

I can think and reflect on these things, but I can’t go back now. All I can do is move forward in life and adapt to all of the changes that are happening around me.

While I feel a great deal of unease at this point…a new normal is coming. I need to accept this and figure out how to make life work for me.

Are there any things that you wished you would have done/done more of before the pandemic started?

 If anyone reading this is struggling, don’t hesitate to message me. We are all in this together. Lets weather this raging storm!

#covid19   #stayathome   #newnormal   #life

My Skincare Routine

My Skincare Routine

This pandemic has stressed me out as it has many, many other people. Since it first happened, my skin care routine went by the wayside. I just stopped caring because I did not think it mattered anymore.

In the past couple of weeks, I have changed my mind and decided to get back into a routine. It might make me feel better about myself even if I am not going into public anytime soon.

So, here is what I will be doing for my skin for the next few months!

My skin/Face issues

Acne-

I used to have pretty severe acne. It is lot better now, but I still get pimples occasionally.

Hyperpigmentation-

This is a huge issue that I have to deal with. I have dark spots all over my cheeks and my chin is darker than the rest of my face (I don’t really think I can change that though). I hate it!

Pock marks-

I had to deal with huge, unsightly boils by both sides of my nose back in 2010. They left pock marks in those areas.

Oiliness-

I used to have extremely oily skin back when I was in middle school and high school. We are talking “fry some chicken on it” level. It has gotten better but it still gets bad around my period.

Nasolabial folds-

These showed up after losing my pregnancy weight and have never left. I miss the fullness that my face used to have but I could look worse.

Lines under my eyes-

I have had lines that show up under my eyes when I smile since I was 23. This might be due to how much I rub them.

Excess hair

I get excess hair on my upper lip, chin and neck.

So basically, I look a hot mess!

The products I will use

I can’t afford some of the things that will probably help me so I will just use what I can. Here are my products of choice:

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Sunscreen is very important! It protects from aging and the worsening of hyperpigmentation. This one is fragrance free and does not leave a white cast on me.

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The Ordinary is a company that has a lot of reasonably priced skincare products. This particular serum they offer has vitamin C and Alpha Arbutin in it. These two ingredients are good for evening out skin-tone, brightening skin and anti-aging.

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This is retinol cream from Amazon’s brand, Belei (https://www.amazon.com/stores/Belei/Homepage/page/C39D399D-68CA-4057-8574-3BB9E23C35CD). Retinol is supposed to help with anti-aging and evening skin tones. I think I will definitely need Retin-A as it is stronger, but I will be using this for now. This product is fragrance-free so I really like that about it.

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The Micro Polish from Makeup Artist’s Choice is supposed to be like an at-home microdermabrasion. I think exfoliation is good for my skin.

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This is the pumpkin exfoliating mask/peel from Makeup Artist’s Choice. I have tried many of the peels from the company and I wanted to get a new one. This one has glycolic acid in it which is a good thing. I am not expecting any miracles from it though.

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As a PCOS sufferer, I have to deal with excess facial hair. This is soothing for my skin on areas where I shave.

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This was a cheap LED light massager. There are different color lights that are supposed to help with different skin issues. I will be using the red (for collagen) and green (hyperpigmentation) light. It most likely won’t help anything at all, but I love the feeling of a facial massage.

My routine with the products

Daily skincare-

1.Cleanse

2. Treat: The Ordinary serum(morning)/ Retinol cream (in the evening, rosehip oil if I am not using it)

3. Protect: Sunscreen every two hours

LED Light massage-

Monday, Wednesday and Friday

Red light: In the mornings after cleansing

Green light: In the evenings after cleansing

Micro Polish-

Two times a week after cleansing in the evening.

Pumpkin mask-

Once a week, 24 hours after using the retinol cream.

So that is it!

I don’t have high hopes at all for my routine, but it is the best I can do right now. If I notice even a little bit of a positive difference, I will be incredibly happy.

I will continue to research and figure out better products for me to use in the future.

Have you changed your skincare routine during this pandemic?

Thanks for reading!

#skincare  #beauty  #covid19  #stayathome

I Hopped on the Turmeric Trend and Here Is Why!

I Hopped on the Turmeric Trend and Here Is Why!

I usually march to the beat of my own drummer in most cases. For whatever reason, I chose to hop on the bandwagon when it comes the use of turmeric as a supplement in my daily diet.

I had seen it a lot on Pinterest. Tons of recipes and pictures for “golden milk” and “golden tea”.” At first, I thought it seemed ridiculous, but now I find myself consuming turmeric on a daily basis.

For this post, I will go into why I decided to hop on the turmeric train and how I have been taking it.

Why I chose to add in turmeric to my diet

I have always liked spices and seasoning in my food. Turmeric isn’t one of my favorites, but I do like it in certain things.

I wasn’t exactly sure what was so great about it health-wise, so I decided to look into it more. First came the research articles on turmeric. I will summarize key points from them below:

*Contains curcumin which is a polyphenol.

*Used for a very long time in cooking and for medicinal purposes.

* Has immune system boosting benefits

*Has anti-inflammatory benefits.

*Shown to be more effective than placebo at decreasing bad cholesterol.

*Needs to be combined with black pepper in order to increase the absorption of it.

*High doses can cause GI upset.

*The benefits will be there when consumed in food for long periods of time.

*As with any supplement/herb/spice, there needs to be more studies done (and it would be nice if they really would do more studies on these things!)

Second came the anecdotal evidence. There are tons of positive reviews on supplementing with turmeric. The good results that people have had, persuaded me to start consuming it too.

How I take turmeric daily

I consume turmeric in the form of what I call, a “hot toddy,” twice a day.  It is not exactly like a real hot toddy though.

A real hot toddy is a drink that has been around for many years. Drinking them was supposed to treat colds and coughs. They usually contain alcohol (rum, bourbon or whiskey), lemon, honey, cloves and cinnamon.

There is no hardcore scientific evidence that hot toddies help with colds/flus, but they do provide warmth which can be of comfort when you are sick.

My version of a hot toddy includes turmeric powder, ginger powder, black pepper, apple cider vinegar, honey and sucralose (don’t judge me on that). The reasonings I have behind putting each of these ingredients in my toddy are as follows:

  1. Turmeric: Immune system boost.
  2. Ginger: Immune system boost.
  3. Black pepper: Need it with the turmeric.
  4. Honey: Has some soothing properties.
  5. Apple cider vinegar: May have some benefits. Also, I do like the flavor of it (is that weird?).
  6. Sucralose: Makes the drink taste less like trash.

My “hot toddy” recipe

Here it is if you are interested in making it!

What you will need:

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You don’t have to have organic versions of these ingredients. These are just what I happen to have on hand since I started making the drink. Feel free to add in other things to your liking!

The measurements and what you will do:

1/2 tsp (or more if you want) of turmeric powder

½ tsp (or more if you want) of ginger powder

A couple shakes of black pepper

1 tbsp of apple cider vinegar

1 tbsp of honey

Extra sweetener (if you need/want it)

6-8 ounces of hot water

All you do is mix these things together in a mug and then drink it! Like stated before, I drink two of these a day (one without honey in it). You could drink less or more than me. Whatever you want!

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This pandemic is crazy

I, like many other people, never imagined something like this virus situation would occur. Since it happened, I have been trying to make sure I am as healthy as possible.

Even though the scientific evidence behind turmeric boosting the immune system isn’t strong, I will still be consuming it along with other things just in case.

Do you like turmeric? Let me know what you think about the drink if you do indeed or have tried something like it before!

Thanks for reading!

Some sources:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6205834/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5664031/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK92752/

#turmeric   #immunesystem  #covid19  #stayathome  #health  #goldendrink

I Tried Sleep Hypnosis Every Night For A Week. Here Is What Happened!

I Tried Sleep Hypnosis Every Night For A Week. Here Is What Happened!

I wish I could sleep this good!

My sleep has been totally disrupted for the past six months. It has gotten even worse since this whole pandemic situation started. My anxiety has been higher.

If I am two days before my period starts…forget it. I won’t be sleeping at all. Darn hormones!

I was looking up ways to improve my sleep hygiene when the idea of sleep hypnosis came up. This seemed kind of foolish to me at first. I always thought hypnosis was complete quackery to be honest.

Nevertheless, I kept looking into it. I found many sleep hypnosis videos on YouTube and was very intrigued.

I decided to try them out each night for a week. Read on for how it went!

First, a little background on hypnotherapy

Hypnotherapy was started back in the 18th century (1701-1800) by a German physician named, Franz Mesmer. The doctor came up with it on his own which caused a great deal of skepticism in the science community. He really believed in what he was doing though and felt that he was helping his patients with their various ailments.

Hypnosis is still done to this day even though the science is shaky at best and can’t be agreed on. It is about getting into a state of mind in which concentration is heightened. When one is this way, they are allegedly able to take directions and suggestions easier.

People are started off in a relaxed position- either sitting or laying down. A trained therapist guides the hypnosis sessions by talking to them gently, with a calm voice.

The conditions that practitioners claim hypnosis can treat are smoking habits, anxiety, depression, phobias, insomnia, GI problems (ex.IBS), pain and sex drive issues. The number of suggested sessions ranges from one to six depending on what conditions people are wanting to fix.

Becoming a hypnotherapist requires training. This involves formal education and clinicals. After criteria is met, the candidate can then obtain their certificate and start practicing. If one wants to pursue a certificate, they need to be in certain career fields. These careers include social work, physicians, dentistry, ministry, counseling, psychology and other healthcare work.

Finding the videos

As mentioned before, I found a lot of sleep hypnosis videos on YouTube. It was a little bit overwhelming as I didn’t know which ones to choose.

I decided on trying the videos by a man named, Michael Sealey (find his channel here: https://www.youtube.com/user/MichaelSealey/featured). He has been on YouTube for quite a few years and has hypnosis training.

He has so many videos and they all sounded good! I clicked on his playlist called Deep Sleep Hypnosis (see it here: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLO9OtUmChpP_Po7RGMHFJ4kNbavmHhYhJ)  and went from there.

There are 46 videos included in the playlist. I chose seven of them-one for each night of the week. My plan was to get into bed at around 10:00 PM and listen to the videos on my phone with ear buds (that is recommended).

How each night went

Monday

This night’s video: Sleep Hypnosis for Calming an Overactive Mind

I was really excited to start trying sleep hypnosis. The reasoning behind choosing this video was due to it being for helping reduce the clutter in our minds. This is one of the reasons why I have trouble sleeping-too many thoughts running through my head.

 After taking a relaxing shower, I hopped into bed and fired up the video on my phone. I decided to lay flat on my back at first but then eventually switched to laying on my side. It was more comfortable to me.

I fell in love with Michael’s voice right away! It is soothing with a deep tone and accent (he is from Australia).

Unfortunately, I was expecting too much from it my first time. I was thinking that I would fall asleep easily which did not happen.

Focusing on his guidance was hard for me and I was not able to reduce the thoughts running through my head. I chalked it up to it being my first night trying it and that maybe that was just not the right video for me.

I was still excited to try again!

Tuesday

This night’s video: Hypnosis for Life Healing Sleep- Manifesting Health and Cleansing Chakras

I chose this one because “life healing sleep” sounded good to me. Also, I have always liked the sound of rain so that being in the video was a deciding factor too.

Let me tell you, that voice of his combined with the soft rain sound was heavenly! I got so relaxed throughout the time listening to it and felt peaceful.

With this video, I was able to concentrate on his guidance better. I ended up falling asleep before it was over. Success!

Wednesday

This night’s video: Sleep Hypnosis for Jaw Relaxation & Teeth Grinding

I have a teeth grinding issue that is worse in the evening so I was interested in trying it out. If you know anything about teeth grinding you would know how bad it is for your mouth/jaw and how achy you can get because of it.

Honestly, I don’t remember if my grinding stopped as I passed out about 15 minutes after I put it on. This seemed strange to me because I wasn’t even that tired when I laid down in bed. Another success?

His voice is like butter to my ears!

Thursday

This night’s video: Sleep Hypnosis Release Negativity with Deep Mind Change

I chose this one because releasing negativity in my mind is something I need to do. My negative self-thoughts have gotten better over the years but there are some improvements that can be made.

I did get to a calm and happy state when listening to it. It really got me thinking about who I am and where I want to be in life. I also loved the faint amount of music that was playing in the background.

I didn’t fall asleep during the video, so I decided to put on Tuesday night’s video again because I loved it so much. It didn’t take me long to drift off to sleep once I started it. Success!

Friday

This night’s video: Sleep Hypnosis for Celtic Healing Energy| Clearing Negative Energy for New Growth

I chose this one because the title and the thumbnail looked nice. Celtic healing practices have always been fascinating to me so I felt this would be right up my alley.

The music in the background was so calming to me. My brain really responds to it in combination with his voice.

I loved this one as I found it to be very beautiful. It made me fall asleep peacefully!

Saturday

This night’s video: Sleep Hypnosis for Floating Relaxation| Calm Your Mind for Deep Sleep

Okay, I don’t know specifically why I chose this one. However, it was an absolute pleasure listening to.  Beautiful and simple. For whatever reason it hit me hard (in a good way!) and left me being fully focused on the relaxation of my body.

I fell asleep a couple minutes after it ended.

Sunday

I decided to do Saturday’s video again. The plan was to do a different one each night, but I just had to go back to the previous video.

It was just as wonderful as the first time and I fell asleep a couple minutes afterwards again.

My final thoughts on sleep hypnosis

I loved the sleep hypnosis videos overall.  The video I did on Saturday and Sunday was my absolute favorite out of all of them. Tuesday’s video was a close second.

As you can see, the sleep hypnosis did work for me. I think it was because I really wanted it to.

Hypnosis is not like what you see in the movies/shows. You don’t fall into a trance when the hypnotherapist counts backward from ten. It is about getting you to concentrate so that positive changes can be made over time.

Don’t expect miracles if you try any of the thousands of sleep hypnosis videos that are available, but they could help you to relax a little bit. You never know!

Will I be putting on more sleep hypnosis sessions?

The answer to that is… I actually have been putting them on every night since! The videos really help me to sleep and they are safer than medications.

I also plan on trying out the morning meditation videos that Michael Sealey offers (maybe I will do a post on that in the future?!)

Have you had any experiences with sleep hypnosis/general hypnosis/meditation? What are your thoughts on it?

Thanks for reading!

Some sources used-

https://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/hypnosis/about/pac-20394405

https://www.britannica.com/science/hypnosis

#sleephygiene   #sleep   #covid19   #stayathome   #anxiety   #depression   #hypnosis   #michaelsealey

Working Out At Home? How Is It Going?

Working Out At Home? How Is It Going?

Hmmmm. Future home workout routine?

Because of this awful pandemic, gyms/fitness centers are most likely closed everywhere (or they should be). Good thing that there are so many ways to get in shape or maintain fitness levels at home!

I have been working out for years at home. As you can probably see, I am really fit. What I like about home workouts is that I am not competing for equipment. I also have an aversion to seeing myself in gym mirrors.

I thought I would post my current workout regimen that I will be doing for 4-5 more weeks. Feel free to start doing it too!

The routine!

I am doing an upper body/cardio with abs/lower body schedule with one day off in between. The upper and lower body days combine one minute of cardio along with the weightlifting moves.

Upper body (each group done two times)-

A1. Star Jumps A2. Chest flies

B1. High knees B2. Bent over rows

C1. Burpees C2. Back flies

D1. Mountain climbers D2. Shoulder press

E1. Turn jumps E2. Lateral raises

F1. Butt kicks F2. Curls

G1. Jump forwards and backwards G2. Triceps extensions

Lower body (each group done two times)-

A1. Jump squats A2. Legs-together squats

B1. Star jumps B2. Forward lunges

C1. Jump lunges C2. Single leg deadlifts

D1. Jump forwards and run back D2. Side lunges

E1. High knees E2. Regular deadlifts

F1. Lateral hops F2. Hip thrusts

Cardio with abs-

I choose the level 4 or 5 cardio/HIIT workouts from Fitness Blender on these days.

Being gym-less

Like I said before, I am accustomed to working out at home so this pandemic isn’t bothering me in that regard. I understand how the change can be tough for other people though.

Just look around the internet to find a ton of different routines you can do in your home with whatever amount of space you have. It is important to keep active and stay as healthy as possible during these unprecedented times.

What is your fitness routine like these days? Let me know!

Thanks for reading!

#fitness #womenshealth #pcos #weightlifting #cardio #hiit #covid19 #stayathome